Networking can be an invaluable tool in terms of opening doors to new opportunities in any industry. This is no less true when it comes to the world of healthcare: whatever your position within the field is, nurturing your relationships with colleagues can be beneficial in many ways. The following strategies can help you facilitate positive associations with other healthcare professionals to help you share knowledge, resources, and connections.
Learning from your colleagues’ experience and staying informed about the latest developments in the field are both integral aspects of developing your career. Getting involved in professional organisations will help you achieve both.
There are various associations and societies that you can join depending on your specific healthcare area and participating in one can increase your chances of meeting people who can provide you with the opportunities you are looking for.
Social Media Outreach
Social media outreach is a great tool for networking. LinkedIn is one of the most popular professional social media resources and it is widely used by students, professionals, and businesses alike.
Make sure to optimise your profile by not only including a polished resume, but also demonstrating your creativity and personality when filling out the summary and headline. Choosing a friendly, high-quality, professional profile picture also goes a long way.
In addition to gaining potential opportunities, social media networking will also help you stay up to date on what others in the field are involved in and what the competition has to offer.
Donating your expertise and skillset to volunteer opportunities can benefit you in many ways. Not only can it help you meet new people involved in your field, but it can also boost your reputation and provide you with professional and personal satisfaction.
Volunteer options are widely available in hospital settings, and there are also many organisations, associations, and community events that may offer them, so it can be a good idea to keep an eye out for an opportunity that works for you.
Shadowing Senior Colleagues
Shadowing senior/more experienced healthcare staff is a brilliant networking tool and will allow you to directly observe their work, ask questions, and learn more about a specific area. It can also help you gain insight into other departments and experiences, see how other teams work, and receive useful practice tips.
Locum Tenens Work
Taking up locum tenens work on the side is a great way to increase your exposure to different healthcare settings, expand your skillset, and of course- meet new colleagues, thus growing your professional network. It is also another great method of boosting your reputation and making a good impression within new environments.
Social media is not the only way to meet other healthcare workers and create new connections: in-person networking can provide you with a more direct, immediate connection with new contacts.
Attending conferences, workshops, seminars, and courses is a great tool to expand both your skillset and professional network. Try to introduce yourself to as many people as possible, or simply ask colleagues you already know to introduce you to new connections.
If you meet somebody you’d like to stay in touch with, make sure to follow up afterwards. It can be a good idea to send them a quick text message to let them know you enjoyed meeting them. Make effort to learn about who they are and their experiences and let them know that they can reach out to you in case they need help with anything.
Keep in mind that networking is supposed to be a symbiotic interchange of information and resources: it goes both ways.
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